Reuters, among others, reports:
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met Russia’s foreign minister on Friday, symbolically presenting him with a red “reset” button to improve ties that sank to a post-Cold War low during the Bush administration….
“I would like to present you with a little gift that represents what President Obama and Vice-President Biden and I have been saying and that is: ‘We want to reset our relationship and so we will do it together,[‘]” said Clinton, presenting Lavrov with a palm-sized yellow box with a red reset button.
Clinton and Lavrov had dinner on the 18th floor of the Intercontinental Hotel in Geneva.
They joked about the Russian misspelling of “reset” on the button before sitting down at an oval table with aides. “We worked hard to get the right Russian word. Do you think we got it?” Clinton asked. “You got it wrong,” said Lavrov, telling her “Peregruzka” meant “overcharge.” …
How does that happen? Unless I’m unfamiliar with some alternative meaning — and one that the Russian foreign minister was unfamiliar with, too — “peregruzka” doesn’t remotely mean “reset.” “Gruz” means “load,” and “pere-” means “over-“; “peregruzka” means “overload.” (I take it that “overcharge” is used in the story to mean an excess of an electric charge, which is to say an electrical overload, not “overcharge” in the more common English sense of charging too much money.) Doesn’t the State Department have fluent translators to do such things? Or am I indeed missing some alternative meaning?
Thanks to InstaPundit for the pointer to the story.